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Japanese MotoGP, Friday Practice | Brad Binder smashes lap record to top P1

Gold & Goose
Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Racing, KTM RC16, 2023 MotoGP, Japanese MotoGP, Motegi, action [Gold & Goose]

Brad Binder has ended the day atop the timesheets on the first day of action for the Japanese MotoGP, the KTM rider heading off championship leader Pecco Bagnaia at Motegi.

On a day that saw Binder give KTM’s new carbon fibre chassis its race weekend debut, the South African was in fine form with a record-breaking lap of 1m 43.489secs.

It served to smash one of the longest-running records on the MotoGP schedule, set back in 2016 during the Bridgestone era by Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo, taking a three-tenths chunk out of the erstwhile marker.


He was one of three riders to dip below Lorenzo’s time, Binder followed up by Bagnaia in second and Aleix Espargaro in third.

Bagnaia’s fast time towards the end of P1 represents a more aggressive change of tact from the Italian, who has normally used Friday’s to focus on dialling in his race set-up. However, after seeing his championship lead reduced to just 13 points in India last weekend, the Italian was keen to display a show of strength against title pretender Jorge Martin.

The Spaniard, who was quickest in the morning’s FP1 session, was ran his rival close with a 1m 43.843secs lap to go fourth, ahead of Marco Bezzecchi and Fabio di Giannantonio on their respective lone VR46 and Gresini Ducati machines this weekend.

Johann Zarco and Maverick Vinales booked their places into Saturday’s Q2 session with the seventh and eighth best laps, while Pol Espargaro will make his first direct appearance into the pole-deciding session after going ninth best on the GasGas Tech3. Together with Jack Miller snatching tenth spot, three.

2023 Japanese MotoGP | Twin Ring Motegi, Japan | Practice Results | Round 14 of 20
Pos.NameNat.TeamBikeLap Time
1Brad Binder🇿🇦Red Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 43.489
2Pecco Bagnaia🇮🇹Ducati Lenovo TeamDucati GP231m 43.518
3Aleix Espargaro🇪🇦Aprilia RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 43.784
4Jorge Martin🇪🇦Prima Pramac RacingDucati GP231m 43.843
5Marco Bezzecchi🇮🇹Mooney VR46 RacingDucati GP221m 43.945
6Fabio di Giannantonio🇮🇹Gresini Racing MotoGPDucati GP221m 43.947
7Johann Zarco🇨🇵Prima Pramac RacingDucati GP231m 44.062
8Maverick Vinales🇪🇦Aprilia RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 44.117
9Pol Espargaro🇪🇦GasGas Factory Racing Tech3KTM RC161m 44.219
10Jack Miller🇦🇺Red Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 44.261
11Miguel Oliveira🇵🇹CryptoData RNF RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 44.317
12Joan Mir🇪🇦Repsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 44.428
13Fabio Quartararo🇨🇵Monster Energy YamahaYamaha M11m 44.520
14Marc Marquez🇪🇦Repsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 44.574
15Franco Morbidelli🇮🇹Monster Energy YamahaYamaha M11m 44.657
16Cal Crutchlow🇬🇧YAMALUBE RS4GPYamaha M11m 44.709
17Raul Fernandez🇪🇦CryptoData RNF RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 44.811
18Takaaki Nakagami🇯🇵LCR Honda IDEMITSUHonda RC213V1m 44.928
19Augusto Fernandez🇪🇦GasGas Factory Racing Tech3KTM RC161m 45.231
20Michele Pirro🇮🇹Ducati Lenovo TeamDucati GP231m 45.866
21Alex Rins🇪🇦LCR Honda IDEMITSUHonda RC213V1m 47.236

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